Sub Regions Feel Alienated, NC Tells Commission In Jammu

SRINAGAR: National Conference has suggested the “unique” delimitation commission that no sub-region should feel neglected. It has told the commission that Pir Panchal and Chenab Valley sub-regions are feeling alienated.

The NC delegation led by Devinder Singh Rana handing over a memorandum to Delimitation Commission Chairperson in Jammu on July 8, 2021

The party has insisted that Jammu and Kashmir is at the crossroads, right now. For equitable empowerment, the party said the Commission must give its due to all parts of Jammu region including SCs and STs.

NC met the Commission under the leadership of provincial president, Devinder Singh Rana. He was accompanied by Surjeet Singh Slathia, Ajay Kumar Sadhotra, Sajjad Ahmed Kitchloo and Javed Ahmed Rana.

They submitted a detailed memorandum signed by Rana. It is being reproduced here:

“Jammu & Kashmir is at the crossroads of history.

We have been and are a strong votary of strengthening democracy in Jammu and Kashmir. We always espouse the cause of the people of Jammu and Kashmir as per their aspirations which are diverse and multidimensional.

Any Delimitation process has a vital role in empowering each constituent to be an equal shareholder in the process of democracy so that each one feels empowered and not feels relegated, isolated, disconnected or disempowered.

This Delimitation Commission in the circumstances that it has been constituted is unique and its findings can have far-reaching consequences in shaping the future of Jammu and Kashmir. History will judge its decision and our role critically and if we fail we shall fail our people and the Nation as a whole.

We are confident that the Delimitation Commission shall work in the most transparent, judicious and fair manner providing justice to all in delimiting the constituencies as per the constitutional framework based on the basic tenants of Delimitation – population, geography, topography, area, physical features, contiguity, the convenience of administrative units and facilities of easy communication and approachability of public convenience.

We feel that decentralisation should form core of democracy, all regions or sub-regions crave for equal role in governance where no one should nurture a feeling of subservience or discrimination.

We are for the singular, inclusive Jammu and Kashmir. Jammu and Kashmir is a model of unity in diversity, but each region and sub region has its own diverse characteristics and thereby peculiar needs and demands which need to be addressed by the Delimitation Commission in a manner that everyone feels involved and democratically empowered.

Jammu region with an area of 26293 Km2 and a population of 53,50,811 (as per the 2011 census which is the basis of this Delimitation Commission) is a pluralistic society with multi-ethnicity, linguistic diversity and has a representation of various castes and creeds. Jammu and its sub-regions (whether it is the plains of Jammu or the hills of Poonch-Rajouri or the erstwhile Doda District comprising Kishtwar, Doda and  Ramban) feel alienated and have a sense of deprivation.

This Delimitation Commission must give its due to all parts of the Jammu region so that our commitment for the equitable empowerment of all regions and sub-regions does not get dented.

There are also geographical and topographical challenges in the Jammu region and certain areas are far-flung, inaccessible, remote, backward and mountainous and so a need to address their issues in a manner that they can also be equal partners in the process of democracy by being able to conveniently exercise their franchise.

Representation particularly in the far-flung, rural areas must be judiciously decided so that there is accessibility and ease of public delivery to enable effective governance and approachability of public representatives.

The Scheduled Caste Communities, the Scheduled Tribes of the region must get adequate judicious representation. Reservation should be based on the settled criteria which should be followed in a transparent manner to ensure that the faith of the people is maintained in the institution of the Delimitation Commission.

We are sure that justice will come to Jammu and Kashmir and to the Jammu region through the Commission.”


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